Canberra children continue to die under the Territory’s ‘care and protection’ system

Other than the Jack Sullivan case back in 2008, Bradyn Dillon and Jakob Oakey’s stories are the only deaths Canberrans and Australians are aware of (and we continue to look for other kids’ stories for answers on why they are dying).  Like Jakob, Jack’s death would not have made the ACT Child Death Review reports. due to him have being 18 at the time he died despite the horrific failings of Canberra’s CYPS in his case. Where are the other AT LEAST 21 children who have died since 2012 and how many more have died in 2017/18?  Canberra has given our people no confidence, transparency or oversight to prevent our children being abused, neglected and dying when the government has been overseeing them.

In September 2016, ABC brought the presentation Behind Closed Doors of the deaths and (just some of) the failures in Bradyn’s and Jakob’s cases.  Of course since the airing of BCDs much, much more information has come out on both Jakob’s and Bradyn’s deaths and the depth of the failures in these two cases continue to build up due to the negligence and detrimental decision making of the Child and Young People Services (CYPS) in Canberra.

Since Behind Closed Doors aired the figures of Canberra children known to CYPS has risen by at least 8 (which of course does not include neglected and abused ca…re leavers – such as Jakob – who died as a result of their time in care). The figures known at the time BCD aired stood at 13 (more girls than boys) plus Jakob and Bradyn.  A new review is now out. The figures as of November 2016 (over a year ago) now stand at AT LEAST 21 due to the writing of the reports some deaths are not shown. For example, Bradyn died in 2016 yet there is no record of a child death at all known to CYPS for that year. If there is less than a certain number (4 or 5 deaths) in a year, then NO death is noted (as I understand it). This is why there are AT LEAST 21 (but we know at least 22 including Bradyn) who died who were known to CYPS.

As far as we understand this to mean:

The figures include children known to CYPS (but not under orders) and children under ACT CYPS orders (whether they are interstate or not). The figures do NOT include children who died in the ACT but reside in other states. If the figures for a certain year are less than 4 or 5 they simply put that dot. So eg Bradyn died in 2016 and was VERY well known to CYPS but because in 2016 there was less than 5 deaths, they don’t even count Bradyn as a statistic in the child death review. So in 2012 and 2016 there was potentially 8 more deaths that COULD HAVE occurred that don’t even rate a mention.  This means that we will also never know whether there was a failure in communication between states where a child was known to another agency.

Also, notable, due to the secrecy that ACT CYPS are run under (even though deceased children do not need privacy nor is there legislation protecting their privacy necessarily) we don’t know how these deaths occurred, all we know is that the children were known to CYPS prior to death. Without transparency our kids will continue to suffer. As a public servant run state barely anyone can speak out against the government – as you are probably aware the ACT Government made huge efforts to shut the airing of our doco down in the Supreme Court – thank God ABC Canberra won!

Read the ACT 2016 Child Death Committee Review here

We have been desperately attempting to find these families since Jakob and Bradyn’s deaths. Where are they and why is the ACT Government not standing accountable and transparent in these deaths?

Nothing is changing and we should be the Territory leading the way for our nation yet we are lagging well behind and we STILL do not even meet the National standard for oversight and we have no external review (such as ACAT) for CYPS decisions for children except to bring theses damaging decisions to the Children’s Court which can take years, far too late for some children.

Jakob died in February 2016 after being abused and neglected in the care of the ACT Government and other NGOs who CYPS outsources his care to.

Source : https://jakobsvoice.wordpress.com/2018/05/04/canberra-children-continue-to-die-under-the-territorys-care-and-protection-system/

You must be logged in to comment due to spam issues.